THIS IS WHERE I LEAVE YOU
by: Anthony Zangrillo
Directed by Shawn Levy, This is Where I Leave You, is a movie about the Altman siblings, who are forced to bond after the death of their father. While the story mostly focuses on Jason Bateman’s character, Judd, it does expand to include that of all the siblings, and their unique problems in the family. The eldest Paul is played by Corey Stoll, who is the one that stayed in the small town that they all grew up in. He manages the family store with his wife Alice, played by Kathryn Hahn, struggling to conceive their first child after years of marriage and hormone treatments. The next sibling is Tina Fey’s character of Wendy, whose husband spends more time working than with his family. Jason Bateman is the second youngest and without going into details about his unique problems is estranged from his wife and starts to bond with Penny Moore (Rose Byrne), the girl who always had a crush on him. Last is the youngest sibling Phillip and is played by Adam Driver, he is the screw-up of the family; the one who never grew up. They are all forced to sit Shiva as a part of their father’s last wishes; moreover they are forced by to live under one roof by their mother (Jane Fonda), who loves to share their personal lives with anyone who’ll listen. This premise leads to some hilarious tension and arguments between the siblings.
Overall the movie is both hilarious and touching. Moments when the brothers are arguing or bonding over a smoke are some of the funniest moment’s I’ve seen in a movie in a while. Other moments, usually revolving around memories of their father bring a palpably sad tone to the film. The movie however blends these moments fairly well: it is never too sad, nor is it too comical. It turns what appears at first to be a broken and bickering family to a group of people, who really only want the best for each other, regardless of whether or not they get on each other’s nerves. The movie ultimately does stay with you after you leave the theater, which is something all too lacking in Hollywood today.
Overall the movie is delightful!